|artwork by SK Dapoz|
Fable Ten: Growing Up
She found that, as an adult, she had many voices arguing within her. They often caused her to have migraines, and she would drink a little too much, hoping to quiet their endless bickering. It was on a trip to China that she first discovered that there were old people who were able to see her inner companions and to talk with them about their needs. Of the angels, she learned little and, certainly, she longed to have these angels with her at all times. Of the fairies she learned to distinguish the good from the occasional bad, and to quiet their voices by speaking more loudly with her own voice. She liked her voice, she found. It was strong and had good vibrato. She learned to sing Chinese Opera and became a popular TV star. Her most requested role was that of the old woman who became young again when she saw her true love.
Fable Eleven: Friends
Of all threats, Rabbit feared most the cars that moved without stopping. Going out to eat was enough to set her heart beating too fast, even for a rabbit. She grew thin, and her fur began to fall out in large patches. Her small room with the gilded furniture and brocade wall hangings looked shabbier every day. God, how she missed the mixed green salad days of her youth! One day the tortoise came to visit. He said he had been traveling for months just to see her and he was astounded at the changes he saw. “Come and live with me,” he offered. She agreed and, taking only a few pieces of heirloom jewelry, she left her home forever. The tortoise carried her in his mobile home and fed her choice bits of vegetation. She became sleek and beautiful once more. They moved near the lake where they often played cribbage far into the night.
Fable Twelve: Child #2
Little Derek was born on the same quiet, treeless street, and his back yard was inhospitable, full of rough stones and mosquitoes. During the day he waited in a car seat, strapped in firmly against the possibility of investigation. He would occasionally be given some cold formula, the bottle propped at an angle so that it would not fall out of his mouth. At night his father screamed at him and occasionally kicked the car seat. His mother had never read Dickens, and yet somehow she was able to recreate the worst of Victorian England without finding any redemption for herself or her baby, who never cried.
by Rhonda Palmer